Councils are being pussies about cat control

Lots of bylaws about dogs.   But councils don’t have the balls to go near the kitties.

Dunedin City Council is the latest local body to jump on the cat control band wagon.

It’s one of eight councils calling for the Government to introduce national rules which could include cat rangers and shutting cats in overnight.

The Council suggested putting cats in collars with a bell, microchipping and desexing.

The proposal from the Council will next month go to a Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ) vote.

If it is successful, LGNZ would make it a policy, and begin lobbying the Government to have it made law.

Consulting ecologist Mark Bellingham is questioning why councils are insisting the Government bring in cat control laws.

He told Newstalk ZB animal control regulations are managed by councils.

“Are the councils too wimpy to do anything and they’re going to dump it all on government to carry out what they should be doing themselves?”

He hadn’t seen any good evidence to show collars really make a difference, with some cats working out how to move so as to not have the bell ring on their collar.

“Except they could get caught and then you have an issue of cruelty to a cat.”

The idea of a “cat curfew” which would result in owners locking their cats inside at night was another unsupported solution, he said.

“The thing is, you’re talking about cat curfews, well the size of the evidence is actually not very good on that, because it seems that at night cats are actually really good at getting rid of rats and mice. That’s the bulk of what they take.”

They tended to hunt birds more during the daytime.

As for an idea to employ “cat rangers”, Bellingham could not see how the plan would work.

“The cat ranger thing sort of sounds like someone out there with their six shooter saying ‘make my day’. I’m not sure how well that’s going to go down.”

There is a simple answer of course.  Make having cats outside, at all, illegal.   Any cat off its own property can be legally culled and the owner charged the true cost of its disposal.

Cats are the only pet animal that are freely allowed to roam on other people’s properties.  Just because it’s always been that way doesn’t make it right.


– NZ Herald.

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